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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2002
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    North Carolina
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    2,143

    Default Pony Club for Adults

    A few horse shows ago I was wrapping my daughter's legs with vet wrap so her knee straps wouldn't rub under her jods. I got thinking about where a parent new to riding would acquire enough knowledge to truly help a child at a show. I remember reading in Practical Horseman years ago about a Pony Club for Adults and thought it was a great idea. I'd love to take classes on show turn out and braiding etc. Do you think such a club would be useful? If so, what type of classes/topics would you want to see? Thanks!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2007
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    367

    Default

    The United States Pony Clubs do have a chapter for adults called Horsemasters! usually they are run in conjunction with a local pony club.
    I'm hoping that my daughter's pony club will add in Horsemasters so I can join!
    http://www.ponyclub.org/Horsemasters.htm
    Moving at the Speed of Haflinger



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 7, 2008
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
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    1,981

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    Quote Originally Posted by Limerick View Post
    A few horse shows ago I was wrapping my daughter's legs with vet wrap so her knee straps wouldn't rub under her jods. I got thinking about where a parent new to riding would acquire enough knowledge to truly help a child at a show. I remember reading in Practical Horseman years ago about a Pony Club for Adults and thought it was a great idea. I'd love to take classes on show turn out and braiding etc. Do you think such a club would be useful? If so, what type of classes/topics would you want to see? Thanks!
    I love your timing, I was just wondering about this, too. (From the pov of a re-rider who'd like to learn more hands-on horse care stuff, not a pony club parent, though. )

    I know I can go and sign up to take riding lessons with lots of places, but I don't feel like that on it's own would really prepare me to own my own horse - and yeah I could board it and hope the barn manager and other boarders would help me out with problems, but after reading some of the threads on COTH about bad barn management, I really don't want to be dependent on someone else to make sound decisions about my horse's basic care!



  4. #4
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    Feb. 6, 2002
    Location
    North Carolina
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    2,143

    Default

    KDow, I definitely would want something that was geared for people wanting to learn horsemanship. What is your ideal class format for such a program?? And how often would you want to meet? Monthly? I know you're not in my area but it's fun to brainstorm.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug. 26, 2001
    Location
    Oxford PA
    Posts
    10,337



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb. 3, 2000
    Posts
    2,607

    Default

    I know some adults started an Old People's Riding Club near me a few years ago -- I'm not sure how active they are now --

    There are several USDF GMOs/Combined Training Associations in my area -- These groups tend to sponsor a good number of educational opportunities -- Lectures/workshops they've sponsored have included:
    Safer Forage
    Poulticing
    Strength building exercises for equestrians
    Pilates
    Feldenkrais
    Dressage test reviews with local judges whenever new tests are published
    Homeopathic medicine
    Floral Essences
    Bits
    Grooming for show
    Showing horses in hand
    Watching videos ... training videos and events like the Olympics, WEG, etc.
    Training scale
    Saddle fitting
    Chiropractic
    Massage
    Reikki
    Trailer safety

    Plus they schedule riding clinics, fix-a-tests, and adult camps --

    I'd be interested in other topics like:
    equine digestive system including issues such as ulcers, colic, etc
    course design
    safe jump building on a budget
    "I never mind if an adult uses safety stirrups." GM



  7. #7
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    Feb. 6, 2002
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    North Carolina
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    Dab, that is a GREAT list-thank you!!!



  8. #8
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    Nov. 7, 2008
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    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Limerick View Post
    KDow, I definitely would want something that was geared for people wanting to learn horsemanship. What is your ideal class format for such a program?? And how often would you want to meet? Monthly? I know you're not in my area but it's fun to brainstorm.
    I would think you'd need something that was a little bit flexible, to account for the fact that adults have a lot of other demands on their time. Maybe a monthly 'class' meeting plus a weekly or bimonthly 'social' gathering where people could meet to discuss stuff from the class, practice things learned in the class if necessary, just generally ask questions/get other people's thoughts on horsey issues - the 'social' gathering could be more flexible in terms of participation, so if someone needed to miss for some reason, they wouldn't be missing out on anything major. (I'm thinking the 'social' gathering would provide a place where you could come and ask people to help you figure out feeding or supplements, bring a piece of tack or equipment you're not sure about the condition of, that kind of thing. It'd also provide a kind of 'study group' if the material being covered by the classes was something that required it.)

    There's a nice list of potential topics already, so just some ideas - I know one thing I'd really want to learn in detail would be First Aid - horse and human. (Maybe dog and cat, too, since they tend to be around barns so often. )

    I was also thinking that maybe a tack fitting clinic could make a good meeting subject - maybe bring in a specialist, but rather than the fitter going assembly-line through the horses, have only a few horses selected (how many would depend on the time available) so that the fitter could go over everything in detail and explain not just what looks bad, but also what looks good. (You could possibly pay for the fitter's time by also allowing people to pay for their horses to be looked at before/after the class. Before might actually work out well, because then the fitter would be able to pull specific horses to use as examples for various things.)

    I would LOVE a class or classes on trailering, also. Starting from the ground up - inspecting the trailer, inspecting the tow vehicle, inspecting the hitch. Safety considerations - including how to determine if your tow vehicle is suitable for the job. Maybe actual hands-on practice changing a tire on a trailer.

    Ideally a chance to actually drive a truck and trailer (without horse, to start with ) in a safe place - but that might be difficult to arrange due to logistics (finding a low-traffic place or private land to practice, making sure insurance will cover the use) so at the very least, some discussion of good driving practice with a trailer, and also instruction on what to do if things go wrong.

    Grooming beyond the basics - various styles of braiding, clipping.

    Class on hoof care - how to recognize various foot related health issues, how to remove a shoe when necessary (if it's partially off or bent, for example.)

    Nutrition - again I'd start with the very basics and cover how to tell if hay/grain is bad (with stinky examples!) and then proceeding on to figuring out what's right for your horse, what the various numbers mean if you have hay analyzed, etc.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr. 28, 2005
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    1,800

    Default

    LOVE the idea! My girlfriends and I have talked about starting a club like this, but with busy schedules we haven't gotten around to it.

    We thought it would be fun to have guest lectures at members' homes. For example, one evening the farrier might give a talk on shoeing, then our equine massage therapist could join us, etc. And of course, there would be wine and cheese!

    Love the topics listed by the other posters.
    ~ Citizens for a Kinder, Gentler COTH...our mantra: Be nice. ~



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2002
    Location
    North Carolina
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    2,143

    Default

    Thanks for all the replies!!! Keep them coming. I really think there is a need for this type of thing.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar. 19, 2009
    Location
    Out West
    Posts
    577

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    I desperately needed this sort of thing when I bought my first horse but it didn't exist where I lived. I ended up going to the U.K. to do intensive BHS training. It took a ton of planning to leave family and horse behind for 3+ months, but it was an amazing experience. I consider myself incredibly lucky that I had the opportunity to do it and the support back home to make it possible.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2002
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    Zone 6
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    1,881

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    https://www.facebook.com/HunterHillFarmIowa

    Oh my god - she's gone and got the eventing bug! I will send you some antibiotics! Take the entire bottle and do two hunter shows and it will pass!



  13. #13
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    Feb. 6, 2002
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    North Carolina
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    Old People's riding club sounds great............buuuuuttt I'm not crazy about the name. I'm not old yet-not even 40. Can I model a club after OPRC but name it something more age appropriate?? Suggestions welcome.



  14. #14
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    Aug. 12, 2002
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    Zone 6
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Limerick View Post
    Old People's riding club sounds great............buuuuuttt I'm not crazy about the name. I'm not old yet-not even 40. Can I model a club after OPRC but name it something more age appropriate?? Suggestions welcome.
    I guess my sense of humor is different I like the name and I was in my 20's when it began so....

    Maybe if the name offends, then it's not the club for you. We really are a nice bunch of people that like to have a good time with our horses and friends and try not to take ourselves too seriously
    https://www.facebook.com/HunterHillFarmIowa

    Oh my god - she's gone and got the eventing bug! I will send you some antibiotics! Take the entire bottle and do two hunter shows and it will pass!



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec. 8, 2002
    Location
    Staunton, VA US
    Posts
    352

    Default OPRC

    "Old People's Riding Club" - so named because their original name "Old People's Pony Club" was too close to the USPC for comfort is for adult riders . The original concept was a program based on the Pony Club model, but for adults, and modified to a small degree so as to be adapted better for the adult rider or re-rider.

    OPRC Chapters mostly take on an identity of their own. I was president of a former OPRC affiliated club that eventually went independent because the focus of the members was not at all interested in the educational component of OPRC, so they became a locally organized independent trail riding club with once-a-month social gathering where they planned the various monthly rides sponsored by the club.

    For those who are interested in the program, Hope Jacobs, founder and first president of OPRC had put together a full kit for those interested in organizing a local OPRC chapter. Because the organization garnered much national publicity thru articles in the Practical Horseman magazine, they had a fair number of chapters after a couple of years of operation.

    U S Pony Clubs does have the horsemasters program, and perhaps the OP should look into that as an option. Otherwise, there is the option of organizing a OPRC chapter, but be aware that running such a club takes a lot of time and energy, mostly spent in arranging the various instructors for the topics offered for club meeting, and other administrative things that go along with OPRC membership.

    Rick in VA



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb. 3, 2000
    Posts
    2,607

    Default

    More topics:
    PPE
    worming

    One local GMO is affiliated with BHS and offers their horse welfare courses and exams -- http://www.bhs.org.uk/DocFrame/DocView.asp?id=972 --
    "I never mind if an adult uses safety stirrups." GM



  17. #17
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    Nov. 7, 2008
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    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Quote Originally Posted by rmaryman View Post
    U S Pony Clubs does have the horsemasters program, and perhaps the OP should look into that as an option. Otherwise, there is the option of organizing a OPRC chapter, but be aware that running such a club takes a lot of time and energy, mostly spent in arranging the various instructors for the topics offered for club meeting, and other administrative things that go along with OPRC membership.
    Does anyone have any experience with Horsemasters? There doesn't seem to be a local OPRC around here, but here is a Horsemasters.



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